Rosie the Riveter Wasn’t First

Rosie the Riveter Wasn’t First

Rosie the Riveter wasn’t the first.

Time. Space. Family. Having enough.

Enough courage. Enough to eat. Enough. These are the things that make life sweet.

I bet you just might love Labor Day like I do.

BBQ’s & grilling out with family & friends. Basking in the first wisps of fall air. Watching dogs feast happily on an extra bone.

Curious, how joy can spring from the depths, forging the future by recalling a formative past.

Think of your other fav holiday … if you think challenge and even despair are in that holiday’s founding, you’d be right. Take Thanksgiving — it honors the souls lost at sea, those lost in the new-to-them land, and more.

Survivors, beneficiaries and witnessesit is we who have created the holidays, the vacation time. The sick-leave and more.

Join me in celebrating these, the things you might have taken for granted (& we haven’t yet gotten to Rosie the Riveter..)

In celebrating those who did the early and hard work, turning their anger into action, ditching despair, aligning to duty and paving the road for what we enjoy today.

  • Sarah Bagley (1806-1889)
  • Mary Harris Jones (1837-1930)
  • Dolores Huerta (1930- )

… and thousands more

In their honor, let us, like Rosie the Riveter, keep that which courageous women and men have worked so hard to achieve, and transform it for our own very different time.

With Gratitude*
PS – Read on & share this socially. Thanks!

*Gratitude to you, dear reader, to those who Sacrificed, to those who worked & made this holiday and more, possible for us all.

Lawrence, MA, 11 January, 1912. You wouldn’t think 32-cents less would do it, but hard-working women were done.

Already struggling, their employers had passed to them a business cost, The difference was stark: eating a meal, or going hungry.

Women stood by their machines, not moving, not speaking, then replying: “Not enough pay.”

With citizens from 51 nations…

within the township, Lawrence was known as “Immigrant City,” very much an American melting pot.

Many-languages, many customs, one focus.

100+ years after Francis Scott Key penned the poem that became our national anthem, staying alive in the Land of the Free and the home of the brave had become a question of existence.

In hours, word of the women’s strike swept through Lawrence’s subsistence tenements and the next morning the walkout spread to neighboring mills. The shouts of strikers, women, children & men: “Short pay! All out! All out!”

Over 10,000 workers..

… had struck by the end of the next day, and the numbers kept growing. Rosie the Riveter would have been proud. By March, Congress had opened hearings, factory owners’ wealth was taking a hit, and children’s testimony was swaying the nation.

By 14 March, the weeks-long strike ended at Lawrence Common, as the 15,000 workers gathered shouted their agreement to accept the offer of a
> 15-percent wage hike
> a bump in overtime compensation
> and a promise not to retaliate against strikers

By March’s end, other industries has followed suit and 275,000 New England textile workers had received similar raises.

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, 1911

146 trapped women & girls died. No fire escapes, the doors to the stairwells and exits were locked, to prevent unauthorized breaks.She led the campaign to make ten hours of labor per day the maximum.

Sarah Bagley & LFLRA colleagues, 1843

She led the campaign to make ten hours of labor per day the maximum.

Mary Harris Jones, 1903. Known as “Mother Jones”, she led the Women’s Trade Union League.

Nicknamed “Mother Jones,” she lead a 125-mile march of child workers to bring the evils of child labor to the attention of the President and the national press.

Dolores Clara Fernández Huerta is an American labor leader, civil rights activist and mother of seven.

She has received numerous awards for her community service and advocacy for workers’, immigrants’, and women’s rights, including

  • The Eugene V. Debs Foundation Outstanding American Award
  • The United States Presidential Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights
  • The Presidential Medal of Freedom.
  • In 1993 she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame, the first Latina to be so honored.

The iconic Rosie the Riveter would not have been possible without the women who took courage by the lapels and made life better — for themselves and their families.

The Real Rosie the Riveters! During World War II, seven million women become industrial “Rosie the Riveters” and over 400,000 join the military.

Nearly 19 million women held jobs during World War II, with three million of them new entrants to the workforce — many women were already working in a lower paying job or were returning to the work force after being laid off during the depression.

PS — Difficult people wearing you out? Yeah, that’s most of us. Me too, and it’s super common! Check out these classics and let them be a great start for you.

  • “Don’t Let the Jerks Get the Best of You” – by Paul Meier
  • “Please Understand Me” – by David Keirsey & Marilyn Bates
  • “Safe People” – by Drs Henry Cloud & John Townsend
  • Homage to Mom & math (short video) on my channel @

Plus a related post, my simply powerful Gratitude practice – Try it! @